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Editor’s Note: A tumultuous year…

With just two short weeks left in 2016, it’s time to look back and reflect on a tumultuous year, to say the least.

We said goodbye to music legends, including Bowie, Cohen and Prince, and screen stars such as Alan Rickman and Gene Wilder bowed out, while we also contended with the political upheaval of Brexit, the fall-out of which is set to run and run. We also had the shock of the Trump election to contend with.

Meanwhile, the political and economic disruption reverberated in the mortgage market where many have described it as ‘a year of two halves’.

The buy-to-let sector, in particular, had a torrent of disturbance to contend with. In the run-up to the implementation of the stamp duty hike on 1 April there was a rush on purchases of BTL property, while things have slowed down considerably since then. Of course, the sector has even more changes to face in 2017, but the feeling is that, while business will ease off a little, BTL will always have a strong place in the market.

Next year, the hope is that Government will lay off landlords and allow the sector to absorb the changes that have been applied, instead switching focus to house building, boosting supply and helping first-time buyers to get their feet on that first rung of the property ladder, elusive for too many.

In some ways the year has flown and in others it feels like a decade has passed since January, so intense has the year been. But, on a positive note, if you’re reading this, you’ve (almost) made it through the other side. And you know what they say, if it doesn’t kill you…

I’m sure we’ve all learned a lot from 2016, but most of us will be happy to see the back of it.

I’d like to take this opportunity to thank all of our readers and friends who continue to support Mortgage Strategy, in print, online, on social media and in many other ways. I wish you all the best for the festive season – enjoy the much-deserved break and reflect on what you’ve achieved throughout the year.

I look forward to working with you all in 2017. Cheers!

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